Haddock51

Lego Train 9V Extreme - ready!

Recommended Posts

Not really, not with this complexity. 4 pages of dense information is simply too much.

But maybe we can get closer to the mysterious behavior: Could you draw up a simplified Trackdesigner layout highlighting the problem? And the secondly: How are your power feeds wired to the power source(s) within this simplified scheme? There are certainly not as many feeds as there are sources (i.e., the 9V train speed regulators) so the feeds are probably bunched up and are connected to one source. Both wires? And: Do the switches you used interrupt both, the ground and +9V line? Or just one? A schematic would surely help.

Best
Thorsten    

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
11 hours ago, Toastie said:

Not really, not with this complexity. 4 pages of dense information is simply too much.

But maybe we can get closer to the mysterious behavior: Could you draw up a simplified Trackdesigner layout highlighting the problem? And the secondly: How are your power feeds wired to the power source(s) within this simplified scheme? There are certainly not as many feeds as there are sources (i.e., the 9V train speed regulators) so the feeds are probably bunched up and are connected to one source. Both wires? And: Do the switches you used interrupt both, the ground and +9V line? Or just one? A schematic would surely help.

Best
Thorsten    

Actually, I have the same problem with the two yards on level 85. These power feeds can not be removed!

Let me explain in detail with the help of this picture and the schemes below:

The picture shows speed regulator D, a switch connected to speed regulator D and the switch box.

The switch connected to regulator D is in position "Yard" which means that all power feeds operated by speed regulator D on the main line (level 50, parts of level 85 and ramps between level 50 and 85) are inactive.

The only active power feed with this configuration is power feed T1 on the left ramp between level 50 and 85. The basic idea behind this configuration is to move trains from yard A resp. yard B smoothly to alt. off the main line without other trains moving at the same time.

 

27175728959_8f2629ee0a_c.jpg

 

And now the cases:

Case 1:  Operate train on yard A:

Point configuration:  Halfcurve (HC) 1: left, HC 2: right

Power feed configuration: yard A: on, yard B: off

Result: only train on yard A is moving

Case 2A:  Operate train on yard B:

Point configuration: HC 1: left, HC 2: straight

Power feed configuration: yard A: off, yard B: on

Result:  both trains are moving!

Case 2B:  Operate train on yard B:

Point configuration:  HC 1: left, HC 2: right

Power feed configuration:  yard A: off, yard B: on

Result:  only train on yard B be is moving with HC 2 in "wrong" position!

 

38236568844_6ec0e3186f_c.jpg

 

The "minus" wires for power feeds on yard A and yard B are directly wired to  block DD "minus" in the cable terminal." Plus" wires are connected to switches "Yd A" resp. "Yd B" on the switch box and then to block DD "plus" (operated by speed regulator D with switch in position "Yard") in the cable terminal. (see picture of cable terminal on the first page of this thread).

The only common denominator for all three problems (yards on level 50, level 85 and the siding on level 175) are additional power feeds that are/were properly mounted and wired. It seems like these additional power feeds "disturbe(d)" neighbouring points. In the cases described above, some kind of interference seems to have affected HC 2.

 

Finally, this is the scheme with siding on level 175 and power feed S 175 (which has been removed) and standard points on each end of the siding.

This section is operated with speed regulator C. Wiring of S 175 the same way as described above.

This siding and the neighbouring main line (vertical climb) had the same mysterious problems as described above and before.

 

27178497319_dc53249c46_c.jpg

Edited by Haddock51

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thank you very much for the additional details, @Haddock51.

I don't want to be a smart megablocks - here are just a few thought on your issues. I am also pretty sure that you have done all the math already. This is just an attempt to shed some light into the mysterious things that happened. Please ignore all that in case you have been there, did that and so on ...

The LEGO points are - as far as I am concerned - weird, but I guess all metal rail systems do behave like that. Figure 1 shows the electrical layout of a 9V LEGO point - as far as I can tell from opening them up to remove the little nasty piece of ABS that makes the points hard to change direction:

lego_switch.jpg

Figure 1: 9V LEGO switch point wiring, straight position. Note a) the permanently powered lines b) in straight the red line is switched, in branch the blue line.

 

Figure 2 shows a simplified section of your layout and illustrates the case 1 scenario, along with the information you gave on the switch box and regulator wiring. (Please excuse my stupid drawings - I am using PowerPoint - this is all I know with regard to drawing stuff electronically). Just in case you have wired the "DD -" line as in the figure (and only then, i.e. blue is wired as shown, i.e. on the "inside" at feed T1, then only the train on yard 1 has power. 

case_1.jpg   

Figure 2: Case 1 - only train in yard A is moving, as it should be. 

 

Figure 3 illustrates your case 2a - both trains are moving although only switch "Yd B" is closed. The thing is (provided wiring is as shown) that yard A gets power through the "DD -" common terminal (blue line) and the permantely powered red line via HC 1 L whereas yard B is powered through the "Yd B" switch and "DD -"

case_2a.jpg

Figure 3: Case 2a - both trains are moving although the "Yd A" is open.

 

Figure 4 illustrates your case 2b. However, this one does not correctly explain the behavior you observed. What should happen is that both trains are moving.

case_2b.jpg

 Figure 4: Case 2b - only yard B is powered although HC 2 is in branch position. Actually both yards should be powered. 

 

I believe you can rather easily take care of these issues (at least for case 2a) by switching both power lines with "2 x on/off" switches "Yd A" and "Yd B". Of course you'd need to do additional wiring ...

 

With regard to 175 level layout - this is a reversing loop, right? The outside power line becomes the inside power line and you may create a short, depending on the S175 feed polarity with respect to further T-type feeds located somewhere else (???).

Finally, things may even become more confusing when changing directions on the regulator. As far as I remember, the dial hardware (the "coded" copper conductors of the dial and the copper conductors on the printed circuit board) of the regulator actually reverses the entire power ("+" becomes "-" and vice versa). In the "stop" position power is completely removed from the outputs (both, "+" and "-"). In this case the common power block changes polarity as well in your setup and depending on the permanently powered lines of the points, this may create further issues.

This is all pure speculation though and as I said, you may have been there already for a long time!

All the best,
Thorsten   

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, Toastie said:

Thank you very much for the additional details, @Haddock51.

I don't want to be a smart megablocks - here are just a few thought on your issues. I am also pretty sure that you have done all the math already. This is just an attempt to shed some light into the mysterious things that happened. Please ignore all that in case you have been there, did that and so on ...

The LEGO points are - as far as I am concerned - weird, but I guess all metal rail systems do behave like that. Figure 1 shows the electrical layout of a 9V LEGO point - as far as I can tell from opening them up to remove the little nasty piece of ABS that makes the points hard to change direction:

lego_switch.jpg

Figure 1: 9V LEGO switch point wiring, straight position. Note a) the permanently powered lines b) in straight the red line is switched, in branch the blue line.

 

Figure 2 shows a simplified section of your layout and illustrates the case 1 scenario, along with the information you gave on the switch box and regulator wiring. (Please excuse my stupid drawings - I am using PowerPoint - this is all I know with regard to drawing stuff electronically). Just in case you have wired the "DD -" line as in the figure (and only then, i.e. blue is wired as shown, i.e. on the "inside" at feed T1, then only the train on yard 1 has power. 

case_1.jpg   

Figure 2: Case 1 - only train in yard A is moving, as it should be. 

 

Figure 3 illustrates your case 2a - both trains are moving although only switch "Yd B" is closed. The thing is (provided wiring is as shown) that yard A gets power through the "DD -" common terminal (blue line) and the permantely powered red line via HC 1 L whereas yard B is powered through the "Yd B" switch and "DD -"

case_2a.jpg

Figure 3: Case 2a - both trains are moving although the "Yd A" is open.

 

Figure 4 illustrates your case 2b. However, this one does not correctly explain the behavior you observed. What should happen is that both trains are moving.

case_2b.jpg

 Figure 4: Case 2b - only yard B is powered although HC 2 is in branch position. Actually both yards should be powered. 

 

I believe you can rather easily take care of these issues (at least for case 2a) by switching both power lines with "2 x on/off" switches "Yd A" and "Yd B". Of course you'd need to do additional wiring ...

 

With regard to 175 level layout - this is a reversing loop, right? The outside power line becomes the inside power line and you may create a short, depending on the S175 feed polarity with respect to further T-type feeds located somewhere else (???).

Finally, things may even become more confusing when changing directions on the regulator. As far as I remember, the dial hardware (the "coded" copper conductors of the dial and the copper conductors on the printed circuit board) of the regulator actually reverses the entire power ("+" becomes "-" and vice versa). In the "stop" position power is completely removed from the outputs (both, "+" and "-"). In this case the common power block changes polarity as well in your setup and depending on the permanently powered lines of the points, this may create further issues.

This is all pure speculation though and as I said, you may have been there already for a long time!

All the best,
Thorsten   

Thank you so much for your tremendous effort to provide clarification re. these  mysterious findings! The ppt drawings are very informative, certainly to me, so you definitely should not appologize...

However, it's me that needs to start appologizing for two findings that came up since I posted my latest reply:

The scheme on level 85 turned out not to be the final one. There has been a minor change on the layout (which doesn't make any difference w.r.t. the case results). HC 2 in fact is a standard point left.

However, I discovered to my surprise that the "minus" rail on HC 1 leading to the yards was disconnected!  After fixing this issue, the result for case 2b turned out to be different and was in line with your own expected result: both trains were moving!

Please notice that the polarization on the layout is converse compared to your drawings, i.e. your blue lines should be red and vice versa.

 

Then I tested Case 2c - operate train on yard B:

Point configuration:  HC 1: straight, P 2: straight

Power feed configuration: yard A:  off, yard B:  on

Result:  only train B is moving! (Studying your drawings, this makes actually sense)

38078989285_3306c07340_c.jpg

 

So where do I go from here? Since I know the required configurations to operate trains from yard A and B to and from the mainline, I will certainly not get into additional wiring.... (Another important section in the future documentation ...)

The siding on level 175 is not a reversing loop but a short cut. Trains running uphill on the vertical climb can take the siding and return downhill. So outside power lines remain outside and inside power lines remain inside. No risk for shortage. 

38080262355_6f8b32e7db_c.jpg

 

Referring to your final comment, I must admit that I didn't get your point. I believed - and still do - that I have a rather good knowledge and understanding on how the 9V speed regulator works. So I was rather surprised to read about your own thoughts w.r.t. changed polarities (something I have not experienced on my layout):

"Finally, things may even become more confusing when changing directions on the regulator. As far as I remember, the dial hardware (the "coded" copper conductors of the dial and the copper conductors on the printed circuit board) of the regulator actually reverses the entire power ("+" becomes "-" and vice versa). In the "stop" position power is completely removed from the outputs (both, "+" and "-"). In this case the common power block changes polarity as well in your setup and depending on the permanently powered lines of the points, this may create further issues."

 

To conclude: once again, thank you so much @Toastie for your efforts and clarifications! You certainly succeeded in shedding some light into the mysterious things that happened!

 

Edited by Haddock51

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Haddock51 said:

Thank you so much for your tremendous effort to provide clarification re. these  mysterious findings! The ppt drawings are very informative, certainly to me, so you definitely should not appologize...

However, it's me that needs to start appologizing for two findings that came up since I posted my latest reply:

The scheme on level 85 turned out not to be the final one. There has been a minor change on the layout (which doesn't make any difference w.r.t. the case results). HC 2 in fact is a standard point left.

However, I discovered to my surprise that the "minus" rail on HC 1 leading to the yards was disconnected!  After fixing this issue, the result for case 2b turned out to be different and was in line with your own expected result: both trains were moving!

Please notice that the polarization on the layout is converse compared to your drawings, i.e. your blue lines should be red and vice versa.

 

Then I tested Case 2c - operate train on yard B:

Point configuration:  HC 1: straight, P 2: straight

Power feed configuration: yard A:  off, yard B:  on

Result:  only train B is moving! (Studying your drawings, this makes actually sense)

38078989285_3306c07340_c.jpg

 

So where do I go from here? Since I know the required configurations to operate trains from yard A and B to and from the mainline, I will certainly not get into additional wiring.... (Another important section in the future documentation ...)

The siding on level 175 is not a reversing loop but a short cut. Trains running uphill on the vertical climb can take the siding and return downhill. So outside power lines remain outside and inside power lines remain inside. No risk for shortage. 

38080262355_6f8b32e7db_c.jpg

 

Referring to your final comment, I must admit that I didn't get your point. I believed - and still do - that I have a rather good knowledge and understanding on how the 9V speed regulator works. So I was rather surprised to read about your own thoughts w.r.t. changed polarities (something I have not experienced on my layout):

"Finally, things may even become more confusing when changing directions on the regulator. As far as I remember, the dial hardware (the "coded" copper conductors of the dial and the copper conductors on the printed circuit board) of the regulator actually reverses the entire power ("+" becomes "-" and vice versa). In the "stop" position power is completely removed from the outputs (both, "+" and "-"). In this case the common power block changes polarity as well in your setup and depending on the permanently powered lines of the points, this may create further issues."

 

To conclude: once again, thank you so much @Toastie for your efforts and clarifications! You certainly succeeded in shedding some light into the mysterious things that happened!

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I am sorry that my final comment was unclear.

All I am trying to say is, that there is no "fixed 0 V potential", or reference potential, as you know. When I was tinkering with the regulator I actually thought there is a "ground" or "0 V" fixed terminal and the other goes from -9 via 0 to +9V (I had hoped to read the voltage in a simple setup with an RCX input). But of course no, way too expensive: The electronic ground of the regulator circuit is simply flipped around when going from forward to reverse - in the drawings above, blue becomes red and vice versa. That is all!

Best regards,
Thorsten   

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.